Progressive transition from copper to fibre optic seen as the key to the Telstra/NBN agreement
The Government today welcomed the update on progress in negotiations between Telstra and NBN Co regarding Telstra’s participation in the rollout of the National Broadband Network (NBN).
The Terms of Engagement formalised by the parties today includes a preferred model for any agreement which would see a progressive transition from Telstra’s copper access network to a fibre to premise National Broadband Network.
A model that involves the progressive transition from Telstra’s copper access network to a Fibre-to-the-Premise NBN and an acceptable solution to the use of ducts and backhaul infrastructure will deliver structural separation. However, the Government considers it will also be important under this type of model to improve competitive outcomes during the transition period. The Government will be closely consulting with the ACCC on this issue.
The Government says that any agreement reached by the parties is subject to necessary oversight, including approval by the ACCC.
While the legislation remains an important reform in its own right, the Government has always said that it also provides a framework within which any agreement with Telstra can be independently evaluated by the ACCC.
The Government claims it remains determined to debate and pass this Bill as a matter of priority early in the new year.